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Local lawmakers propose tuition reduction for troops affected by sequester

ALBANY – Sequester-related cuts are apparently going to suspend tuition assistance for military personnel so Assemblyman Kiernan Michael Lalor (R- Fishkill) and Senator Gregory Ball (R- Patterson) Monday announced they will propose tuition reductions for those attending SUNY and CUNY schools.

Lalor said the measure, which has wide spread support from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, is the right thing to do.

“Under the cuts, military students are going to be allowed to finish out the semester, but they are not going to be able to finish out their degree so when they are deciding what they are going to do next semester, we want them to know that if they are in New York and they go to a SUNY or CUNY school, they can plan to go back to school in the next semester and continue on with their education,” Lalor said.

Ball called cutting tuition assistance to the military “absolutely disgraceful.”

Among those supporting the measure is Senator William Larkin (R- Cornwall-on-Hudson) a retired Army lieutenant colonel, who said the men and women volunteered to serve in a time of war “with many being placed in harm’s way, some losing friends, and even returning with physical or emotional scars. Their sacrifices cannot be met with broken promises.”